The Hardwood Cruiser Build (Part 2)


Skills required:

  • Planing
  • Planning
  • Router Usage

Ok. So I picked up another piece of red oak to add to my hardwood cruiser board. I added biscuits, glued it and let it sit overnight again. We added a couple of pieces of scrap wood and clamped them on the end to make sure that we had a nice flat board to work with.


I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. The joints are great and fairly flat. Now it is time for some planing.

I have never done any major amounts of planing before so my experience with a planer is a very small hand planer. I was quite willing to spend a few hours hand planing my deck. Thank god for Jessie again. He introduced me to the planer in the shop. It’s a life saver and incredibly more accurate than I would be planing by hand.

We sent the deck through the planer.


The key to planing is small adjustments and making sure you don’t get any bite back. That is when the planer pulls chunks of wood out of your board. The key to preventing bite back is getting your grains all going the same way. I was pretty lucky in that regard. I’ve learned a lot of woodworking depends on details like looking at grain direction. It’s something I will carry through with me onto my final project.

We put the deck through the planer a few times. The deck is now 3/8″ thick. I was pretty lucky again to only have to plane 1/8″. That is the advantage of starting with good milled wood. If I build another hardwood cruiser I may start with 1″ thick wood as I’m a little nervous about weight bearing. The next step was creating a template. I drew one freehand and folded the paper to create a symmetrical design. Jessie suggested that I try and design something on the computer. I have a design sketched up in illustrator. It is very similar to this hand drawn one but has cleaner lines and is more symmetrical because of the advantage of technology. I will print my illustrator file to scale and bring it in to the shop.


Both The Handmade Skateboard and the video I found online use saws and freehand lines to cut out the shape of the deck. Thanks again to the precision and patience of Jessie I will have a much nicer finished product. Once I have printed my template I will glue it to some scrap wood. I will take a router to the wood and template and create a router guide that I will then clamp to my planed deck. This system will give me perfect symmetry and a nice smooth edge. Plus if I screw up with the router the first time is will be on scrap wood and not crush all the work I’ve put in so far. Next step to a computer print my design and then back to the shop to learn router skills.

Skills Acquired:

  • Planer Form √
  • Digital Design √
  • Attention to grain details √
  • Patience…

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